Eligibility for insurance
Eligible UW employees are offered insurance through the Public Employees Benefits Board (PEBB) program, which is administered by the Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA). PEBB purchases and coordinates the health insurance benefits for all state employees, including UW employees. Below is a summary of how PEBB eligibility rules impact various employee groups.
Academic staff, professional, and classified staff and librarians are eligible for PEBB insurance if they are appointed to an eligible job class that is at least 50 percent salaried FTE per month and the appointment is expected to continue for more than six months.
Faculty (as defined in Chapter 21 of the Faculty Code)
Faculty eligibility rules are complex and depend on the nature of your appointment:
Faculty with a 9 through 12 month appointment are eligible for PEBB insurances at the beginning of their appointment, if it is paid at least 50 percent FTE or more.
Faculty with a quarter-to-quarter appointment who are paid at least 50 percent FTE or more are eligible for PEBB insurance on the first day of the month following the start of the second academic quarter.
Faculty with a one quarter appointment who are paid at least 50 percent FTE or more, and who at any time during the last 12 months were eligible under faculty rules at the UW or another Washington state higher education institution, are eligible for PEBB benefits on the first day of the month in which the academic quarter begins. Under PEBB rules, you are required to notify the UW of the prior period of employment in a timely way in order to establish your eligibility. Failure to notify UW may result in loss of eligibility.
Faculty who had an appointment of one or more quarters during each of the preceding two academic years (beginning with summer quarter) and who were paid on average 50 percent or more, are eligible for PEBB benefits on the first day of the month following the start of the academic quarter. You are required to notify UW in a timely way of your prior employment at UW or other Washington state higher education institutions in order to establish your eligibility. Failure to notify UW may result in loss of eligibility.
Spouse and partner
If you’re enrolled in PEBB insurance, you can enroll your spouse or partner in the same plan. This includes your lawful spouse or your registered domestic partner. The Integrated Service Center provides guidance on valid dependent verification documentation that must be submitted with enrollment.
Dependent child or children
If you’re enrolled in PEBB insurance, you can enroll your dependent child in the same plan until your child turns 26.
Your child is defined as your biological child, stepchild, legally adopted child, child whom you’ve assumed legal obligation in anticipation of adoption, partner’s child, child as specified by court order, or child defined in Washington statutes.
A child may also include an extended dependent in your spouse’s or partner’s legal custody or guardianship. Extended dependent coverage requires approval by the state Health Care Authority.
A child of any age with a developmental disability or physical handicap is eligible as long as the child’s condition occurred before age 26. The child must be incapable of self-sustaining employment and chiefly dependent upon the employee for support.
Temporary employees are eligible for insurance administered by PEBB if they work an average of at least 80 hours per month (480 hours) and work for at least 8 hours in each month for more than 6 consecutive months.
Obtain eligibility as a temporary employee
You can obtain eligibility in one of two ways: either at the beginning of your job appointment or after working for more than six months.
You’re eligible beginning your first full month of employment following your start date when your job description initially includes a planned worked schedule that meets the eligibility criteria.
If your initial planned schedule doesn’t meet the criteria, you can still become eligible. To do this, you must work enough hours to meet the eligibility criteria during a period of six consecutive months (does not have to be your initial six months of work). Then, you’ll become eligible starting the month immediately following the six consecutive months during which you met the eligibility criteria. (You must work at least eight hours into your seventh month to maintain eligibility).
The UW Benefits Office monitors all hours worked at UW and determines when you establish eligibility. When you become eligible, Benefits sends you written notice to your home address. Note: student employment is not eligible for consideration toward faculty and staff benefits.
File an appeal of eligibility
You may appeal an eligibility determination in writing to Benefits within 30 days of receiving an eligibility notice. You’ll need to complete an appeal form and note the specific reasons for your appeal.
If you need more information about the appeal process, see file an appeal on the PEBB website. You’ll need to send your appeal form to the Integrated Service Center for a first-level review, not the Health Care Authority.